What used to be routine traffic stops have now evolved into traffic stops of national attention. Between dash cams, cell phones, police body cameras and other recording devices, every traffic stop comes with an added sense of caution.
As a motorist in New Jersey, it is important to know what a police officer can and cannot do during a traffic stop. Keep in mind, in an effort to not escalate any situation, you should always do your best to remain cooperative and courteous during a traffic stop.
Motorists tend to have a few big questions that always seems to come up when it comes to a traffic stop. These include:
Can an officer make you get out of your car when pulled over?
The simple answer is yes, the officer can. In addition, the officer can also make any passengers get out of the vehicle as well. Police officers will do this for safety reasons, as it is safer for them to face someone who can be a potential threat outside of the vehicle standing up rather than with them inside the car.
Another common question motorists have is:
Can the police search your vehicle?
Back in 2002, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled that police must have “a reasonable, articulable suspicion” to conduct a search during a traffic stop.
This translates to police not being able to search your car on the basis of the traffic stop alone. Keep in mind if they ask and you give consent, and you provide it, then they can search your vehicle.
One last question motorists ask when it comes to traffic stops is:
Can you ignore a police officer’s command to pull over?
You may have seen it in a movie or a TV show where, in an emergency situation, characters ignore sirens and a pursuing police officer to get to their destination. That destination usually is the hospital for an injured passenger or pregnant woman, but in real life, a motorist should not ignore a police officer’s command to pull over.
While you may have a good reason for why you should not be stopping, the police officer is not aware of your situation. All they know is that you may be speeding or violating other rules of the road. In addition, you could face additional charges for not pulling over when requested to do so.
If You’ve Received a Traffic Violation, Contact an Experienced Traffic Defense Attorney Today
As a motorist, it is important to know your rights when it comes to traffic stops. Unfortunately, mistakes do happen and sometimes the law can overstep. If you feel you have been wrongly dealt with during a traffic stop you should contact New Jersey attorneys Bramnick, Rodriguez, Grabas, Arnold & Mangan, LLC. Call 877-423-4878 today to begin discussing your legal options.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.